Kill yourself with fructose — or preferably not

I'm too fat. Maybe this is why. The takeaway? Eat real food, not processed food, and avoid fructose as much as possible. The single best thing you can cut from a diet too high in calories and fructose is sugary drinks, including soft drinks (soda, pop) AND fruit juices (eat the fruit instead). To lose weight faster, cut out more carbohydrates, especially the processed ones (baked goods).

At the end of 1998, I read the book "Protein Power" and followed its recommendations for about two years, and had significant weight loss. A physical exam done for independent reasons afterward showed me to be in good health overall. In 2004, I had heart attack-like symptoms, and was diagnosed with sleep apnea. Many tests were done regarding my heart and arteries to rule out the heart attack, and I was told that my arteries were very clear, so clear that it would be at least 20 years before sufficient arterial blockage could develop to cause a heart attack. After thinking about that a bit, and the fact that my father and one of his brothers both had heart attacks (family medical history), I concluded that it was likely that my stint on the Protein Power diet had cleared my arteries. This in anecdotal in nature, not proof of anything. [N.B. The book I read may have been superseded by a newer edition, it seems to be out of print now, but others are listed on the author's web site.]

I discontinued following the diet because of other events in my life. It was not because I quit believing in its weight loss benefits (and I did slowly regain the weight I had lost, unfortunately). Nor have I found evidence that contradicts its foundation principles. However, about the time I decided I had gotten too fat, and needed to seriously diet again (2012) a friend posted a YouTube link to one of the videos below on facebook, and I was intruigued by the name, and watched the video. It seems that in the intervening years, other researchers have refined the knowledge that was presented in the Protein Power book, revalidating most of the basic concepts, but pinpointing a more specific culprit than "carbohydrates": fructose.

At UCTV Prime: The Skinny on Obesity, a pediatric endocrinologist, Dr. Lustig, presents 7 "sound bite" video episodes focusing on one aspect of obesity each are available here (or on YouTube) in the main section. On the right, a 1.5 hour video of the lecture "Sugar: the Bitter Truth" from a year earlier fills in more details and is broader, but doesn't have the "eye candy" of the episodes... the "related articles" listed at the right, down a ways, are better for folks that like to read (and re-read), and can fill in the gaps that you don't absorb while watching the video, or will allow particular things to be looked up. Dr. Lustig makes reference to a book "Pure, White, and Deadly" in one of his videos, it can be found here in PDF format.

Key points from the videos above:

Key items from follow-on research:

My takeaway is that if you must consume sweets, you should make them yourself using non-fructose sugars. And you should eat them sparingly, even then, if you wish to control your weight.

If you wish to give feedback, feel free to comment on my facebook posting on this topic which contains much the same information, and eventually references this page, which is more organized.